A MARVELLOUS LIGHT x SILVER IN THE WOOD
Briar can rock a frock and cast spells from his skin, but unless he breaks the curse draining his magic, he’ll die before he can leave his mark on the enchanted fashion world. Desperate, he heeds a prophecy promising success if he wins the heart of a masked man in a village haunted by a sentient forest. But two men fit that description, and Briar’s certain he’s fallen for the wrong one.
It was the eve before the Witch’s Rede, and Briar Wyngrave had run out of time to break up with his boyfriend.
‘Boyfriend’ was a generous term. Hardly anyone knew about Briar and Celyn’s relationship, as it was a strictly casual arrangement. If the secret theatre of sneaking off at parties and trysts in potion pantries hadn’t been so appealing, it might not have lasted. Yet it had—for their last two years in Wishbrooke, no less—so a bittersweet goodbye was in order. Tomorrow, their paths would split.
The difficulty was Celyn had been avoiding him.
Music and the chorus of voices floated in from the street below, barely muted by the single-glazing windows. Every pub in Wishbrooke heaved with witches celebrating their final day as apprentices. Glass shattered and beer splashed to a chorus of ‘eeyyyy.’
Eager to join the party, Briar tied the last stitches on his outfit. The fabric shimmered midnight blue, gold embroidery forming swirls of shooting stars. He’d fashioned it from scraps of velvet found in the bin behind a textiles shop. It had taken a lot of magic to heal the seams so the cloak didn’t look like a scarred patchwork of misbegotten trash.
His familiar, Vatii, clacked along the windowsill, peering sideways at Briar’s clothes.
The magpie croaked, “You look like a harlot.”